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Desert Winter Thru-Hike: Everything You Need to Know

Desert Winter Thru-Hike: Everything You Need to Know

The Desert Winter Thru-Hike (DWTH) is a new(er) route created by Brett Tucker (Blisterfree) that connects the Arizona Trail to the Pacific Crest Trail. 

The route traverses the low desert landscapes of Southern Arizona and Southern California for approximately 800 miles.  It provides a deep dive into the Sonoran and Mojave deserts. Of course, your exact mileage will depend on in-route choices you make AND if you connect it to the AZT and the PCT. 

Since we’ve thru-hiked Brett Tucker’s Grand Enchantment Trail (read: route) and his Lowest to Highest Route, he passed along the information for his new Desert Winter Thru-Hike. 

We hiked the entire DWTH including the extra connectors in 59 days in January-March 2024. Our mileage total ended up at 875.4 based on my Coros watch data.

Here is everything we wanted to know before we hiked it. I’ll cover all the details on water, navigation, resupply, difficulty, and overall vibes.

Desert Winter Thru-Hike Map & Basic Info

Desert Winter Thru-Hike Map

The Desert Winter Thru-Hike stretches from Saguaro National Park West in Arizona to Joshua Tree National Park in California. 

As you can see, it has two possible extensions.  First, you can extend the hike between the Arizona Trail (AZT) and Saguaro National Park.  Second, you can extend it between Joshua Tree National Park and the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT).

👣 Thus, route mileage can vary drastically.  The minimum miles you’re likely looking at is around 790.  However, with the two extensions to connect the AZT and PCT (and some bonus miles), we hiked 875.4 miles according to my Coros watch.

It is suggested that you hike it westbound from Saguaro NP to Joshua Tree NP, which we agree with.

Important: The DWTH is a route, not a trail.  While the route includes “trail,” the term here refers to some human-made trails, but also game paths and decommissioned roads in varying states of disrepair.

Why We Wanted to Hike the DWTH

A van life couple packing a food cache for the desert winter thru-hike.
Making Caches from the Van

Karma and I became interested in routes after our first thru-hike of the Continental Divide Trail where we went in opposite directions in 2015.

⛰️ The CDT really sparked our interest in the “choose your own adventure” hiking style.  It also felt like a gateway trail to learn off-trail navigation, honed in our longer food carries, taught us how to filter some really nasty cow water, and more.

🌲 In 2016, we did the Pacific Northwest Trail had also had lots of in-route options and we absolutely LOVED the Lionshead Ridge Bushwhack.

🏜️ Then in 2017, we massively honed our off-navigation skills on a Hayduke “Trail” thru-hike in the spring followed by the Lowest to Highest Route in the fall.

While we both love a nice, maintained trail, we also both love the remote feeling of routes – even if parts of them aren’t as pretty. 

🌵 We found we liked Brett Tucker’s route-making style after the L2H and the Grand Enchantment Trail in 2023.

🚐 Finally, we’ve grown to love the low desert traveling around in our van. While some people only see vast emptiness and a lack of colors, we see more.

So…we figured…why not the Desert Winter Thru-Hike? 🤷‍♀️

Desert Winter Thru-Hike Preparation

Dehydrated Trail Meals
Dehydrated and Vacuum Sealed Trail Meals

We are doing several things to prepare for the Desert Winter Thru-Hike.

1️⃣ First, we read through all the information Brett Tucker sent with the GPS tracks.  He organized everything very well, but it’s a lot to get through.

2️⃣ Second, we added the GPS tracks to Gaia.  Then, we downloaded offline USGS Topo and Gaia Topo maps with routing info so we could navigate in airplane mode on our phones.

3️⃣ Third, we added the paper map set to Avenza.  Honestly, I don’t love the Avenza app, but it works well enough. The Desert Winter Thru-Hike needs these types of maps as well as Gaia.

4️⃣ Fourth, we went to my Mom’s house where she had dehydrated a massive drawer full of delicious plant-based meal ingredients.  For a week, Karma and I took those ingredients, pieced them into two-person meals, and vacuum-sealed them.

5️⃣ Fifth, we ordered high-protein Lenny & Larry’s Cookies and other bars to mail drop or cache for ourselves.  Having lived in our van for two winters in these areas we know that most of these towns don’t have good options for us.

6️⃣ Lastly, we gathered our gear and fixed anything that we needed to repair after the Grand Enchantment Trail.

Resupply: Caching Vs. Mail Drops Vs. Buying as You Go

A food cache in a 5-gallon bucket buried in the desert sand.
Example Food Cache

For the Desert Winter Thru-Hike, we’ve decided to do significant caching.

Since we live in our van when we’re not hiking, caching is a good option for us as plant-based humans. Most of the DWTH towns have very limited selections. If you eat everything, you have more options and may be able to buy as you go with a mail drop here or there.

🚐 Also, we just don’t like a few of the towns having passed through them in our van. We know they exist and how to get to them if we need them. But, we’d rather stay out this time. ⛺️

Finally, figuring out caches before the hike helps us get the best feel of the route. We look into how many days of food we need in each cache and guess how hungry we’ll be. Then, we get two road trips as bookends for the hike: one to place to caches and one to grab the trash we rebury afterward.

We cached a lot on the Hayduke “Trail,” once on the Wonderland Trail, and once on the Grand Enchantment Trail (because we didn’t like the town nearby).

Our Resupply Spots

Two thru-hikers camping at their food and water cache.
Camping at a Cache

We did a combination of caches, mail drops, and buying some food as we hiked for the Desert Winter Thru-Hike.

If you’re plant-based or gluten-free, you should definitely consider a cache or mail drop heavy resupply plan.

Our Resupply Plan from East to West:

  1. 🛒 Oro Valley – Buy as You Go. Large Fry’s grocery store.
  2. 🪣 Cache 1 – Halfway through Section 1.
  3. 🛒 Arizona City – Buy as You Go. The smallest, most pathetic IGA I’ve ever seen.  Also had a terribly stocked Dollar General and Family Dollar.  The gas stations near the highway had better snacks.  Post office wouldn’t accept a mail drop.
  4. 🪣 Cache 2 – Halfway through Section 2.
  5. 📦 🛒 Buckeye – Mail Drop + Some Buy as You Go. Bigger IGA, but not a full-size grocery.  Also had a Dollar General.
  6. 🪣 Tonopah – Cache 3.
  7. 🪣 Wenden/Salome – Cache 4.
  8. 📦 🛒 Parker – Mail Drop + Buy as You Go. Mail dropped the essentials and found different snacks at Walmart and Safeway.
  9. 🪣 Cache 5 – Almost halfway through Section 6.
  10. 🪣 Fenner – Cache 6.
  11. 🪣 Cache 7 – Halfway through Section 7.
  12. 🪣 Amboy – Cache 8.
  13. 🪣 29 Palms – Cache 9.
  14. 🛒 Yucca Valley – Buy as You Go.  Von’s and Walmart were full-size grocery stores.

Desert Winter Thru-Hike Navigation

A thru-hiking couple at an off-trail low pass on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike.
Off-Trail Low Pass

You’ll definitely need off-trail navigation skills for the Desert Winter Thru-Hike.  We used a combination of GaiaGPS and Avenza to navigate. 🗺️

However, to get the tracks and information, you must hike at least 400 miles of any other Brett Tucker (Blisterfree) routes.  This means you should have already racked up those miles through any of the following: the Grand Enchantment Trail, the Mogollon Rim Trail, the Northern New Mexico Loop, or the Lowest to Highest Route.

Using GaiaGPS and Avenza on the DWTH

I found that using a combination of GaiaGPS and Avenza worked the best.  I favored GaiaGPS because I’ve used it longer.

Here, Brett Tucker placed the data book comments inside the GaiaGPS waypoints instead of writing them on the PDF maps in Avenza.  This was incredibly helpful unless they were long comments.  The longest comments need to be read in the data book itself.

When looking at your water for the day, I found it easiest to switch between the water report (Google Sheets) and Avenza. The water report listed water sources by their section, then section mile number.  The section mile numbers were printed onto the Avenza Maps, but not GaiaGPS. 

📍 While the GaiaGPS water waypoints appeared in blue, sometimes when multiple waypoints occurred nearby, you could only see a red waypoint that says “2” indicating 2 waypoints. 

Both map systems worked well for the large number of cross-country miles.

Water on the DWTH

Always one of the most important topics in any desert thru-hike is water! 💦

While most desert thru-hikes have similar water types and situations, the Desert Winter Thru-Hike water sources are a little different. 

This is part of why the route has a prerequisite to get the tracks and information. 

*Most* of the water sources on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike are rainwater dependent. 🌧️ They were also developed for wildlife, not necessarily people.  Thus, more than other routes, the water is inherently limited.

That being said, we drank from cow troughs, game guzzlers, tinajas, potholes, one river, only a few streams, and water caches that we buried ourselves.

The most frequent water sources ended up being fragile game guzzlers. 

The water guzzlers in southwestern Arizona looked like a giant cement fan that grabbed rainwater and funneled it into a cement in-ground trough.  These in-ground troughs had 3 straight walls in and one washboard entrance presumably so Quail could walk in and out.

In contrast, southeastern California game guzzlers had a teardrop cement fan that grabbed rainwater into a rectangular, covered trough.  The troughs sometimes had a manhole cement cover you could move, but sometimes they were cemented shut.  In that case, you had to reach in through rebar to get water.  If the water level was low, we had to strap a water bottle to a trekking pole and “go fishing” for water.

Things To Consider Before Hiking

A couple on top of a mountain in California.
Whipple High Point

Daylight ☀️

One of the biggest differences between spring/summer/fall hiking and winter hiking is DAYLIGHT. You might not think it’s a huge deal, but having less daylight can get rough.

The closer you start to the winter solstice, the less daylight you’ll have.

While some areas of the route are easily night hike-able, some would make a tough area tougher.

Also, consider that the desert has wild temperature swings. You can get completely sweat-soaked at 75 degrees, then shiver for an overnight low of 35 degrees. 🥶

We did night hike sometimes when we happened to get a few miles of dirt road. However, it wasn’t often.

Wind/Rain 💨 🌧️

In the southern Arizona and southern California deserts, storms sometimes are just wind and nothing else.

However, you can frequently see a few days with sustained wind speeds of 25-35 mph and gusts of 45-65 mph. These winds are no joke and can be mildly miserable. 50-60 mph winds can shred your tent if you didn’t set up well. They will definitely snap your guidelines and rip out your tent stakes.

When rain does come, it’s either not enough or too much. Choose your campsites carefully on rain nights!

Migrant Corridor 👟

Trash left behind by migrants walking into southern Arizona.
Trash Left Behind

First, I never felt unsafe and never had any encounters with migrants on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike. Let me be clear on that.

What we did see was evidence of migrants passing through and onto the nearby towns. That evidence was usually empty blackened water bottles, busted out shoes, shoe covers made from carpet, backpacks, and wool blankets.

Because the migrants typically stay off of the roads, they often travel in washes at night.

We opted to avoid night hiking in sections 1 & 2. Furthermore, we chose campsites away from washes and roads.

Cold Weather Gear 🥶

Don’t forget this is a Desert Winter Thru-Hike! At any point, a storm could roll through and you’ll want your layers and a good sleeping bag or quilt.

We had several spells of colder weather between January and March of 2024.

I thought about sending some of the layers home in Parker and I’m glad I kept my cold-weather gear the entire time.

Lastly, as you hike into the California sections, you’ll get a few areas that are at a more sustained elevation and are thus, colder.

Desert Winter Thru-Hike Section Vibes

The DWTH is split into 8 sections with 2 connecting sections.  Brett Tucker suggests going westbound from Saguaro National Park to Joshua Tree National Park.  That’s because it does get progressively more difficult when you hike in that direction.

After thru-hiking the Desert Winter Thru-Hike, I felt like it would also be a good route to a section hike if you didn’t have time for a thru.

This portion of the post is to help both thru-hikers and section hikers prepare for what you’re getting yourselves into.  To put it simply, it’s what I wanted to know before I hiked it.

If you have no interest in the connector miles, just skip ahead to section 1.

Section 0: Arizona Trail Connector (Bonus)

Thru-hiking couple on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike.
AZT Connector

To connect the Arizona Trail to the Desert Winter Thru-Hike, you have to hike your way to Romero Pass. 

You can get to Romero Pass a few ways:

  1. You can out-and-back it from Catalina State Park.
  2. You can hike on the AZT south from Oracle, south from the top of Mt. Lemmon, or from Vail north on the AZT.
  3. Alternatively, you can take any side trail up to the AZT from Tucson.  We chose to start from the top of Sabino Canyon.

💭 Remember: the Desert Winter Thru-Hike is a route, so choose your own adventure here!

🗻 Romero Pass is higher up on Mt. Lemmon, but not at the top.  Thus, you may encounter snow at any point in the winter and should check the forecast beforehand.  We went between storms and had some old snow above 5,000 ft coming down from Romero Pass in late January.

The trickiest part of these connector miles is where to camp.  You’ll need to be strategic because you have both a state park and a city to contend with.

The trail was easy down Romero Pass and the bike path across Oro Valley was straightforward.  You’ll find the concrete bike path hard on the feet, but doable.

There are hotel options at the beginning and end of the bike path.  Also, you can Uber just about anywhere around here if you don’t like the prices or have a friend’s house nearby.

➡️ Overall vibes were very town-centric but easy.

Section 1: Saguaro National Park – Arizona City

Couple on Wasson Peak in Saguaro National Park West.
Wasson Peak

This section begins with a glorious, well-maintained National Park single-track trail.  Enjoy it, but don’t get used to it.

⚠️ A big note on Saguaro National Park West is that you cannot camp anywhere (unlike the eastern section).  We got creative and camped just outside the park boundary.

🗻 You’ll mostly go up Wasson Peak which is a popular winter hike, so you’ll likely see some tourists and unburied toilet paper.

For a large portion of this section outside of the national park, you’ll hike through Ironwood Forest National Monument.  The Desert Winter Thru-Hike will use a mix of OHV roads, mining roads, and cross-country.

It’s important to note here that you’ll be in a migrant corridor.  We never felt unsafe and did not have any interactions with migrants.  However, we saw lots of evidence that they use and pass through these same areas.  We saw blackened water bottles, backpacks, wool blankets, shoe covers made from carpet, baby power bottles, and ripped-up sneakers. 

Thus, we decided to not camp near roads or washes and to not night hike through this section. 

We opted out of one climb in this section because the mountain was being circled repeatedly by a border patrol helicopter and several small planes.  The noise was frustrating down low, so we didn’t want to climb further into it.

➡️ Overall vibes for section 1 were easy off-trail navigation, low desert, and hot temperatures.

Section 2: Arizona City – Buckeye

Backpacker walking a canal with an umbrella for shade on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike
Long Canal Path

Section 2 begins with a very long canal path full of water polluted with agricultural chemicals.  However, it had some fantastic birding!

This area is the northernmost range of the Crested Caracara in Arizona, so keep your eyes open for the ground-hunting falcons that often nest in saguaro cacti here. 🌵

It had mostly dirt roads in varying states of disrepair and cross-country.  The cross-country sections began to get rockier and rockier in section 2 of the Desert Winter Thru-Hike.  The rocks were some sort of lava rock. 🪨

This whole section still had lots of evidence of migrants passing through.  We still never had any in-person encounters, but we could see the same patterns on backpacks, blankets, etc.

Therefore, we still chose to not night hike and purposely camped away from washes and roads.

We also ran into a lot of van lifers in the BLM land surrounding Highway 8.  They were all friendly or stayed in their vans with starlinks on the roofs.

➡️ Overall vibes for section 2 were still easy off-trail navigation, low desert, and lots of wash hiking.

Section 3: Buckeye-Tonopah

Thru-Hiking couple hiking through the desert.
Section 3

Section 3 is a shorter section, but it packs a lot into it. 

We hit some weather in this section, so it seemed just a little harder.  That aside, it had more wash hiking, various types of dirt roads (most without vehicles), and some spectacular views.

The route makes a bit of a U-shape here to get you into more “newly” designated wilderness areas.  “Newly” as in 1990 in the Arizona Desert Wilderness Act.  This gave us more of a sense of being “out there” than the previous two sections.

A lot of the “trail” here was actually discontinued OHV tracks.  When the areas became designated as wilderness, it made those old roads “trails.”

We also saw a decrease in migrant activity in this section, although it didn’t stop completely.

➡️ Overall vibes included a bit more navigation than the previous two sections, fewer people, and short.  I’d say the off-trail navigation difficulty level increased here.

Section 4: Tonopah – Wenden/Salome

Hiking up Harquahala Mountain on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike
Harquahala Mountain

Section 4 is where the vibes changed.  We noticed a distinct shift in the route partway through this section. 

The section started off with some utility roads bringing us to a wilderness boundary.  Then the cross-country sections got longer and longer between bits of dirt road.  The dirt roads also often became old mining tracks.  Sometimes those are easy to follow and sometimes they’re not.

You also hike to the highest point on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike in section 4: Harqualhala Mountain at 5,681 ft.  It’s also the highest point in southwestern Arizona. 🗻

The highest point also comes with a water gap warning. 💦 You get to climb the mountain from the exposed backside and you get a 20-mile water gap.  Here, we also had some of the more frustrating cross-country: the avoid-private-property-cross-country.  When you’re avoiding private property, the most efficient routes are usually ones that don’t quite make intuitive sense.  Therefore, they take more energy and navigation.

Harqualhala Mountain does have an ATV route to the top and actual singletrack trail down the other side!

➡️ Overall vibes include cool views, but suddenly you’re shifting from all low desert to higher desert.  You’ll have one main water gap to pay attention to.  It marks a bit of a shift in the overall route to come. 

Section 5: Wenden/Salome to Parker

Crossing the Bill Wiliams River
Bill Williams River

Section 5 continued on the vibes from section 4: climb more and extended cross-country stretches. 

🗻 Some of the climbs really surprised us with their steepness.  All were very exposed to the sun and wind.  This section was typical desert fare in that you either did not have enough water or had too much water.

The first half of this section felt harder than the second half.  The first half included several climbs and a deep river to cross multiple times.

In fact, the Bill Williams was the only river we followed on this hike.  Unlike the Grand Enchantment Trail which followed many rivers and large creeks, the Desert Winter Thru-Hike only followed one.  And…it was a doozy. 

We picked our crossings carefully and I only got to mid-thigh.  I’m 5’2” for reference. 

After you leave the Bill Williams River for good, you really only have long water gaps as the bigger difficulties. 💦

You’ll progressively get lower and lower in elevation to cross the Colorado River after Parker into California.

➡️ Overall vibes for this section: it felt like the Wednesday of the hike.  It was our largest food carry since we broke the other big food carries up with caches.  The cross-country navigation got harder…totally doable, but harder.  I got junction fatigue a bit trying to find where to leave and find burro trails.

Section 6: Parker, Arizona to Fenner, California

Campsite at sunset on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike
Sunset Vibes

This was a larger section that we broke into two sections with a food and water cache. 

It also went through some of the more remote mountains of the entire Desert Winter Thru-Hike.  They also had less water than most…coincidence? I think not.

That being said, the Whipple Mountains, Turtle Mountains, and Old Woman Mountains were spectacular.  I did feel a bit of a love/hate relationship with the Whipples because we got there in a large storm gap and thus had less water. 💦

We watched the weather radar in this area over the course of the hike and that seems to be a norm.  Only about 1/5 of the storms that hit the SoCal coast made it to the mountains in this section. 

You also switch from the Sonoran Desert to the Mojave Desert in this section.  The change in plant life was drastic and noticeable. 

Never heard of Fenner, California?  No one has.  There’s nothing but an outrageously priced Chevron gas station there. ⛽️

➡️ Overall vibes were big water gaps, lots of longer cross-country sections, and drastically different plant life.

Section 7: Fenner to Amboy

Off-trail hiking in Mojave National Preserve.
Off-Trail Hiking

Section 7 shifts the vibes in a big way again.  Most of this section does an upside-down U-shape through the Mojave National Preserve. 

Here, you’ll go up to the second-highest point at 5,500ft.  AND, you’ll hike at a sustained higher elevation…mostly between 3,500ft and 4,500ft.  While that’s not very high in terms of spring, summer, and fall hiking…it’s fairly high for winter hiking.

You know those storms that mostly missed the mountains in the last section?  Most of them don’t miss this section.  The storms usually seem to hit the SoCal coast and get split after crossing San Jacinto and San Gorgonio.  The Whipples from Section 6 are in the dry portion of the split – the northern portion of the split storm often goes straight to the Mojave Preserve.  Thus, you have more water sources than most of the hike!

You might also notice that you cross Interstate 40 twice on the Desert Winter Thru-Hike and it’s known for wind. 💨 That is also true of the Mojave Preserve.

That aside, the array of Mojave plant life is fantastic in this section!  It has more variety than many other Mojave desert sections.

If you’ve never heard of Amboy, California…I don’t blame you.  I never had either.  But apparently, Roy’s Motel and Café (which is actually only a gas station, not a motel or café) is in multiple movies.  Apparently, it’s in Kalifornia (Brad Pitt) and The Hitcher.  Oh, and they have a volcanic crater nearby that’s geologically fascinating. 

➡️ Overall vibes: high desert, windy, less water gaps, and cool plant life. 

Section 8: Amboy to Joshua Tree National Park

Joshua Tree National Park on the Desert Winter Thru-Hiker
Joshua Tree National Park

Finally, you get to go back into the low desert vibes for a bit…and have some large water gaps! 

⚠️ Be careful with water leaving Amboy.  Not only do you have a massive water gap if you didn’t cache…you have black lava rock for miles.  That lava rock radiates heat like crazy! 

When you think you’re free of the lava rock you get a weird dry lakebed that has very sink-y steps.  You go through part of it, then try to find the side of it for a long time.

The Sheephole Mountains are a treat before you get a sandy cross-valley trek toward the mountains of Joshua Tree National Park.

Partway through this section, you have the option to hitch into the town of 29 Palms.  Yes, an actual town. 🏘️

📝 Then, you have to get a Joshua Tree National Park Backcountry Permit.  The permit is *technically* free, however, they’ve moved to rec.gov and thus, you have to pay a processing fee.  And no, that processing fee does not go to the park system at all.

With your permit, the Desert Winter Thru-hike will skirt the border of JTNP for a while until finally going into the park.  Once you’re in the back way, the route keeps you primarily away from the tourist areas.  That is until it dumps you onto the Boy Scout Trail.  You can take this to finish the route or you can continue onto the PCT!

➡️ Overall vibes: aside from the permit, the route keeps you out of main touristed areas.  It has lots of rocks and washes.  You’ll pass less Joshua Trees than you’d think.  More off-trail navigation that’s sometimes challenging.

Section 9: Joshua Tree National Park to the Pacific Crest Trail (Bonus)

If you’d like to continue your footsteps you can keep going to the Pacific Crest Trail!

You’d start by connecting your steps and extending your national park permit to go to Yucca Valley.  On this western side of Joshua Tree National Park, you’ll enter more single-track trail and tourists. 

After you side-track to an entrance station for water, the Quail Wash zone gives you a reprieve from frantic people who drove a long way.

This half to Yucca Valley is fairly straightforward. 

After Yucca Valley, the connector currently takes you on a road walk up to Pioneertown Mountain Preserve.  Due to some fire closures, you’ll have to road walk more than you’d like. 

Then, you’ll take Pipes Canyon all the way up to PCT mile 253 at over 8,000ft. 

Definitely look at the weather before you attempt this in the winter.  We saw a small storm coming in, went for it, and the storm was a lot bigger than all the predictions.  Needless to say, we bailed and came back with our van two weeks later.  With the van, we could do an out-and-back hike from Highway 38 to the Forest Service boundary where we camped.  We connected our steps and picked our weather window. Overall vibes: definitely a connector route meant more for connecting footsteps rather than for the awesomeness of the path.  Pipes Canyon was cool, but the road walk to it kinda sucked. 

➡️ Overall vibes were that it was cool to connect the steps, but felt different and went higher that we would have liked.

Desert Winter Thru-Hike DAILY Posts

A backpacking couple burying a food and water cache on the desert winter thru-hike.
Burying a Food and Water Cache

For the first time in years, I’m going to aim to write a short post each day.  Depending on cell service, you might get a few of them at a time. 

I heard that the Desert Winter Thru-Hike might have more cell phone service than other trails. From being in the van, I have a few ideas of where it will exist or where it won’t. 📲

Honestly, I’m not sure how this will go. Please, hold me accountable in the comments or over on Instagram!!! 😊

📍 Basically…BOOKMARK this post and check here for the Daily Updates.

Final Thoughts: Is the Desert Winter Thru-Hike Right for You?

The Desert Winter Thru-Hike is NOT an easy trail. However, it is a fun route. If you don’t already know the Sonoran and Mojave deserts well, you certainly will after this!

Basically, if you’ve hiked another Brett Tucker route and liked it, you’ll also like this one.

If you’ve never hiked a route before, you’ll want to get some off-trail hiking experience first. The Grand Enchantment Trail is a great route to start with!

Hotrod and Peaches

Monday 22nd of January 2024

Looking forward to following this trek. Happy trails from both of us 🤩

mandyredpath

Monday 22nd of January 2024

Hiiiiiiiiii 👋 Hotrod and Peaches! Thank you and happy trails to you as well!

Wazi

Monday 15th of January 2024

Hi Veggie! I love to see the post. I hope Karma puts together the spliced video post-trail. Those videos are absolutely amazing. Happy Trails!

mandyredpath

Tuesday 16th of January 2024

Hi Wazi!! Thank you! We'll see if he wants to do that after trail or not. We'll definitely be posting a lot on instagram...you know you want to get it 😉

Bryn

Wednesday 10th of January 2024

Great info!! Love seeing how you’ve cached your food and supplies along your route! Hope you do the daily posts, they were awesome for the beet harvest 😜

mandyredpath

Thursday 11th of January 2024

Thanks, Bryn! I'm going to try my best...I think the lack of daylight will help with writing a bit each night 🤞

Sarah

Thursday 4th of January 2024

Ahh! I am so excited to follow this journey. The page is bookmarked and ready for following along. Your writing is so nice to follow and it feels like we're having a friendly chat which is really nice.

mandyredpath

Thursday 4th of January 2024

Yay! Thanks, Sarah! Please help me stay accountable to the daily posts 😊 🙌

Marty

Thursday 4th of January 2024

Veggie & Karma, I'm a full-time RV'er retiree driving the Beast that pulls my home, Foxy. I'm an aspiring sectional hiker of all trails, wintering in Quartzite and Yuma, AZ, and I look forward to following your trek. Stay healthy, safe, and enjoy the hike.

mandyredpath

Thursday 4th of January 2024

Hi Marty! Thanks for reading along! Foxy is a great name for an RV. I honestly think section hiking can sometimes be harder than thru-hiking with the extra logistics of getting to the start and ends of sections...my hat is off to you! Have fun this winter in Quartzite and Yuma. I love those Arizona sunsets 🌅

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